Medications an applicant is taking often have a less direct, yet still important impact on a claim. When preparing for a hearing, Disability attorneys want to know which medications their client has been taking; Ibuprofen to Oxycontin and everything in between. Social Security is interested in knowing what steps the claimant has taken
to improve their condition and what effects
their medication has on a daily basis.
However, simply being on a lot of medication does not make an individual disabled. If medication can control an applicant's symptoms to the point where she can work, she is likely not disabled. Contrast that with a situation where a claimant has been prescribed plenty of medications and none of them relieve her symptoms where she is more likely to be disabled. An individual is also more likely to be disabled if her medications causes severe side-effects that prevent her from working. Some examples could be dizziness, drowsiness, and headaches to name a few. These, of course, depend upon the severity of the medication and what jobs the applicant has worked in the past.
Medications can cause another "chicken and egg" situation similar to medical records. Many people cannot afford medication for their disability and hope that they will be able to get some relief once they receive Social Security Disability. The bottomline is that Social Security likes to know about your medications and they may help your case, but it is unlikely to be a deal-breaker in your claim so be honest with your Social Security Disability attorney.